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Fiestas: Tidbits, Margaritas & More

Fiestas: Tidbits, Margaritas & More

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Fiestas: Tidbits, Margaritas & More

4/5 (1 valutazione)
296 pagine
1 ora
Apr 2, 2019


Marcela Valladolid loves to entertain guests at her beautiful home in San Diego, and just as she did in Casa Marcela, this book captures the spirit of her hybrid Mexican-American upbringing in vibrant and mouthwatering recipes. Picadillo Lettuce Cups are topped with avocado and lime and make for perfect finger food; Spicy Chimichurri and Jalapeño-Cilantro Aioli are the perfect addition to a crudite platter; the classic panzanella salad is updated with tomatillos, panela cheese, and pork rinds; and vegetarian options include Chickpea Ceviche Tostadas and Sweet Potato Chipotle Hummus.

Of course there are plenty of cocktails, too—Strawberry Basil Cardamom Margaritas, a Mexican-inspired Old-fashioned, Orange Cinnamon Sour, and the Kalimotxo, a red wine and Mexican Coke sangria.
Apr 2, 2019

Informazioni sull'autore

MARCELA VALLADOLID grew up in Tijuana and jumped straight into a culinary life with her first job working at her aunt’s cooking school in Baja, Mexico. She soon realized she wanted to pursue her growing love for food full time. After cooking school, Marcela eventually parlayed her classical training and skills to become a food editor at Bon Appétit magazine. Next she crossed into TV when she landed her own cooking show on Discovery en Español called Relatos con Sabor and was selected as one of the contenders on The Apprentice: Martha Stewart. In 2009, Marcela was given the chance to showcase her family recipes when she released her first cookbook titled Fresh Mexico: 100 Simple Recipes for True Mexican Flavor. Soon after her book release, she landed a dream job as the host of her own Food Network show, Mexican Made Easy, which aired for five seasons. Marcela released a second cookbook called Mexican Made Easy in 2011, a companion to her Food Network show and an entryway into authentic Mexican cuisine. She she was a long-time co-host of The Kitchen, the Emmy-nominated talk show on The Food Network and is currently a permanent judge on Best Baker in America, also on Food Network. Her latest book is Casa Marcela, released in 2017. She lives in San Diego, California.

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Anteprima del libro

Fiestas - Marcela Valladolid

Copyright © 2019 by Marcela Valladolid

Photography © 2019 by Isabella Martinez-Funcke

Cover illustration, Flower pattern © 2019 GarryKillian/Shutterstock

Book and cover design by Alissa Faden

All rights reserved.

For information about permission to reproduce selections from this book, write to or to Permissions, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 3 Park Avenue, 19th Floor, New York, New York 10016.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Names: Valladolid, Marcela, author.

Title: Fiestas at Casa Marcela : 75 Mexican-style cocktails and appetizers / Marcela Valladolid ; photography by Isabella Martinez-Funcke.

Description: Boston : Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2019. | Includes index. |

Identifiers: LCCN 2018043603 (print) | LCCN 2018044777 (ebook) | ISBN 9781328567536 (ebook) | ISBN 9781328567550 (paper over board)

Subjects: LCSH: Cooking, Mexican. | Appetizers—Mexico. | Cocktails—Mexico. | Desserts—Mexico.

Classification: LCC TX716.M4 (ebook) | LCC TX716.M4 V3 2019 (print) | DDC 641.5972—dc23

LC record available at


To Philip, my partner in love, life, work, and entertaining . . . I love you almost as much as I love your pasta sauce. Almost!











About the Author

Connect with HMH on Social Media

Here’s the God’s honest truth: My fiancé, Philip, and I have thrown so many parties we could now do it with three kids hanging from our legs, one hand tied behind our backs, and a glass of wine in the other—all with zero help. (Okay, maybe we’d each need both of our hands.) I set everything up, then we both get to work in the kitchen and clean up together afterward. But guess who does most of the cooking? Philip does! So my biggest thank-you is to him. Without his support and companionship, I would never be so inspired to always open up our home to friends and family. Gracias, Felipe. You, me, a bottle of red, and some Luis Miguel on the speakers, gearing up for a party . . . that, to me, is the perfect Friday night.


To our children, Fausto, David, Anna Carina, and Kongo: Seeing your faces at the table and spending time together are the highlights of these gatherings. Even our fancy dinner parties ALWAYS involve the children, not just ours, but also our guests’. Everyone wins in this situation, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

To everyone on my team at home who loves my children like family: Maria Guadalupe, Luis, Lety, Norma y Lulu, gracias por todo.

These are the key folks when I entertain at home. But for this book, I relied on some of my favorite people, who also happen to be incredibly talented.

Isabella Martinez-Funcke: To be completely frank, one of my greatest satisfactions in doing this book together was having you shoot it. Your first book! The first of many for us, I hope! @isabellamfuncke

Vivi Ley: Oh, how I miss you! Thank you for keeping us all on schedule and me from losing my mind. @vivianaley

Hannah Canvasser: It was a pleasure having you bring these recipes to life so beautifully. @farmtomytable

Perla Laborin: For your assistance in the kitchen and overall great attitude towards life, gracias. @perlaflj

Carlos Sanchez, ChezNug, Suge Night, Chestnut, Chester, Chespirito: Anna loves you more than life, and so do I, for your calm demeanor, insight, and fabulous camera assistance. @cheznug

Ernesto Casillas: My love, thank you for always making my face look its very best! @ernestocasillas

Edna: For the cut, color, and style—this is the happiest my hair has ever been! Gracias! @ednarmz_hair_mua

Erika Funcke: Thank you for your impeccable style. @hijadetumadredecor

Susan Choung: For your wonderful editing. @suddenly_susan

Jamie Carr: My literary agent at WME. @jamiecarr

Justin Schwartz: My editor at Houghton Mifflin, thank you! @justcooknyc

And to the wonderful companies and artists who lent us your gorgeous tableware, I truly hope you enjoy the photos as much as we enjoyed playing with all your beautiful pieces.

Gary from Collins and Coupe: For your impeccable vintage glassware. @collinsandcoupe

Hostess Haven: For your amazing tabletop rentals. @hostesshaven

Vero at Object Mexico: For all those exquisite Mexican-made items.

Linea Norte: For your eco-friendly and Mexican-made furniture and tableware. @lineanorte

Fernanda Uribe from Punto Verde Ceramics: For your magnificent creations. @puntoverdeceramics

I’m at my very happiest when the table is set, the music is on, the wine is uncorked, and the smell of dinner is wafting from the kitchen. These moments that I spend with my loved ones are magical, and nothing satisfies my soul more than inspiring others to create their own special moments. Gracias! Besos!



When it comes to hosting a party, there are two kinds of people in this world: those who light up like a firefly at the prospect, and those who curl up into the fetal position at the very thought. As you probably guessed, I’m in the first group. But I have to confess . . . I didn’t always love playing the host. As a perfectionist, if things weren’t absolutely right, I’d spiral into deep despair. What if the menu is unbalanced? Or the flowers start to wilt? And God forbid I burned a tortilla chip! Everything had to be just so—to the point that I’d forgo the opportunity to break bread with friends and family because I couldn’t handle potential disappointment. That. Was. Me.

My issues are too complicated to delve into here. After all, this is supposed to be a light-hearted book about margaritas (AND SO MUCH MORE)! But basically, as I got older, I cared less about what people thought, which helped conquer my fear of possible imperfections. My focus now is simply on corralling the people I love and feeding them. Don’t get me wrong. If you follow me online, you know that I live for details. Days—sometimes weeks—in advance of an event, I go into hyper-list-making mode. I obsess over the menu and text my fiancé, Philip, daily about what food to serve. I create a timeline for every little moment, from getting flowers to doing my hair. I even color-coordinate the outfits for my entire family. (Yes, I do this. Don’t judge me.)

When your end goal is to create memories for the people you care about, party planning becomes interesting and fun. It’s actually liberating. When I arrived at this point, I finally found the mental space to relax and unwind. They say you get a sense of peace when you create while connected to the source. That’s what hosting a party means to me. Too deep, I know, sorry. You just want delicious appetizers and tantalizing drinks. We’ll get there in a minute, I promise!

But before we tackle the recipes, I want to put you on the right party-planning path with my best tips for stress-free hosting. This is the real deal—the food and drinks I serve to my guests; how I set the table, pick the plates, napkins, and flowers . . . The most important thing that needs to be said, though, is that if you enjoy the process and do it with the sole intention of bringing joy to your guests, TRUST ME, it will all turn out swell. And that’s actually my very first tip . . .

Set the tone for your gathering. If you are nervous, rushed, anxious, annoyed, or just want everyone to go home so you can Netflix by yourself with the leftover wine, then your guests will vibe off that. Set the mood for YOURSELF even before the party starts. Music is on 24/7 over here at Casa Marcela, and the drinks are flowing way before the guests arrive.

Think about your guest list. Who cares about rules and who you HAVE to invite? Do whatever is best so people can enjoy themselves. If that means forgetting to invite the party pooper, then so be it. I think I’m speaking directly to my Mexican peeps here, because the question I get asked the most by my own friends and family is how to politely leave people out. Ha!

Create a timeline. More than a schedule, a timeline gives you a good idea of what happens next. (Schedules imply a set time to do things, which can lead to forced meals and kill the natural flow of events.) You have to let the night (or day) guide you. When the appetizers are dwindling and the conversation is starting to die out, gently guide your guests to the dining room. Don’t clear the dessert plates until everybody is good and done. Turn up the music when you’ve gone through a couple of bottles of wine. If mariachi is going to happen (which we have even in the smallest of dinners, because we just do), YOU HAVE TO WAIT until everybody is totally relaxed and, if possible, a little tipsy. Otherwise they won’t sing along. (Okay, maybe that tip was a little too specific, but you get the idea. The point is to go with the flow . . . )

Pick a theme. I don’t mean like The Smurfs or Day of the Dead (although I’ve done both of these parties, with great success). I mean choose a general idea to rally your event around so your decision-making will be easier. The theme could be a flower, metallic, shabby chic, seaside, Asian, seasonal . . . anything, really. I’ve thrown a

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